Thoughts from the desk of The Rev. Dr. Marcus Stallworth

Suicide Awareness and Prevention Week

Monday, September 06, 2021

This week (September 5 – 11), marks the beginning of suicide awareness and prevention week.

Suicide, is death caused by injuring oneself with the intent to die.  Suicide is one of those topics we don’t like to discuss, but a topic that we all must be aware of in order to prevent ourselves or others from causing intentional harm.

All of us, at some point in our lives, experience feelings of depression, loneliness, sadness, pain and suffering caused by traumatic situational variables of life.  Even Jesus had depressing thoughts.

When Jesus had depressing thoughts, He told his friends (the disciples) about them.  When Jesus had depressing thoughts, He fell down on his knees and prayed to God about them.

If you are thinking about suicide or know anybody that may show signs of depression and loneliness, remember these truths:  God created all of us in His image; therefore he knows all about what we are going through.  God loves us so much that He gave His Only Begotten Son, that we may be forgiven of our sins and have a right to, not only a more abundant life, but eternal life.

“No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind.  And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear.  But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it.” – I Corinthians 10:13 NIV

If you or anyone you know is having thoughts of suicide, please know that God has already provided support to help you through this situation.  You should reach out to:

  • Friends – Don’t isolate!
  • Family – reach out to your family. Our families are the closest support we have.
  • Your Pastor – Please know that I am here to provide pastoral care and counseling
  • Family Dr. or Therapist – Some may experience mental health crisis and need to consult a physician.
  • National Suicide Prevention Hotline – or 1-800-273-8255

There are many people who want to help you!

As Christians, we are called to minister to all of God’s children the same way that Jesus continues to do to this day – with compassion and concern.

As Methodist, our “Christian perspective on suicide begins with an affirmation of faith that nothing, including suicide, separates us from the love of God (Romans 8:38-39). Therefore, we deplore the condemnation of people who complete suicide, and we consider unjust the stigma that so often falls on surviving family and friends.” (¶161(O) – The Book of Discipline of The UMC)

Let’s be aware of our human condition in order to prevent suicide!

Pastor Marcus